Celebrating 26 years of W.A.S.P. Heavy Metal!


13560381Let’s go back to August of 1984. I was a senior in High School, having NOT the time of my life. Little did I know, that the debut album from W.A.S.P., aptly titled, “W.A.S.P.”, would be the beginning of one juggernaut of a Heavy Metal career for Blackie Lawless and his band! This initial offering from W.A.S.P. would become certifiable gold in the U.S.A., selling over 1 million copies of this historic vinyl worldwide! This debut gem would reach to #74 on the Billboard album chart. The original lineup for W.A.S.P. was Blackie Lawless (of course) on lead vocals and bass, Chris Holmes and Randy Piper on guitars and Tony Richards on drums. Drummer Steve Riley replaced Tony Richards shortly after the release of “W.A.S.P.”, and Blackie Lawless has never looked back since 1984.

For over 25 years, Blackie Lawless has assembled musicians to keep the W.A.S.P. band and brand of Heavy Metal as strong and powerful as any of his peer bands out there. Johnny Rod (from King Cobra fame), joined on with W.A.S.P. replacing guitarist Randy Piper, becoming the rhythm guitarist in time for the recording of “Inside The Electric Circus”. Frankie Banali (Quiet Riot fame) would join on as drummer for the “Headless Children” album, and also remained on for the albums “The Crimson Idol” and “Still Not Black Enough”. Mike Duda on bass and drummer Stet Howland on drums are also members of the W.A.S.P. family, playing an undeniably incredible Heavy Metal rhythm section on albums “K.F.D.” and “Helldorado”. In my humble METAL opinion, K.F.D. is by far, the heaviest W.A.S.P. album ever created, both musically and lyrically. It is difficult for me NOT to continue this article stating my admiration for each and every one of the W.A.S.P. albums and each W.A.S.P. musician ever. My intent is to not write a complete history on the music and musicians of W.A.S.P., rather, I wanted to point out highlights of this band that has entertained and satisfied my hunger for great Heavy Metal over the years.

Blackie Lawless gets an enormous METAL THANK YOU from me for providing the world of Heavy Metal with 18 albums (which includes studio, live & greatest hits albums). Plus, Blackie Lawless and W.A.S.P., like so many of their peers, have withstood the “test of time”, stood up to the PMRC and stayed the course carrying and waving the Heavy Metal flag of freedom! Despite what political side of the aisle any Metalhead may be standing, it is my opinion that Blackie Lawless and W.A.S.P. have engaged and broken down barriers with their lyrical content. W.A.S.P. has had their share of “good time party” songs over the years, yet there have been plenty of albums from W.A.S.P., (“The Crimson Idol, “Dominator”), that have made me think as well. 

For me, there has never been a better time to dig into the back catalog of W.A.S.P. albums. With all of the “crap” going on in the world today, (no explanation required for that remark), the muscular Heavy Metal music coupled with the “feel good” and “thought provoking” lyrics from Blackie Lawless and W.A.S.P. are all the escape this Metalhead needs to filter out the sensational junk & white noise from the 24 hour news networks. I have Blackie Lawless on my permanent list of Heavy Metal Hero’s, right alongside Dee Snider.

I also want to thank my “Best Heavy Metal Buddy” in the world for introducing me to W.A.S.P. so many years ago. To this day, we are still giddy about the music and lyrics that Blackie Lawless and W.A.S.P. have provided, it seems not a week goes by where we do not talk about this amazing Heavy Metal band. W.A.S.P. fans do not grow up, we persevere.

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2 Responses to “Celebrating 26 years of W.A.S.P. Heavy Metal!”

  1. I met Blackie, not once, but twice. The 1st time was with Metallica & Armored Saint on the W.A.S.P. debut album, they were all in their bus and me and friends were banging on it and he finally came out and said “what the fuck do you kids want!!??” We were taken back because he was still in his stage clothes and dripping sweat, we just told him that we thought they were great and he thanked us and cooled down and hung out for a bit.

    The 2nd time they opened for KISS on the Inside The Electric Circus tour and I somehow stumbled backstage and seen Blackie standing there and we spoke for a few mins, and HE REMEMBERED ME! I couldn’t believe it, anyway just wanted to share and say thanks for posting.

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